"The New Brunswick Medical Society is calling on the provincial government to develop a plan to make sure there are no barriers to access abortion in the province, but says the contentious two-doctor rule isn’t the problem."
The recent closure of the private Morgentaler Clinic in Fredericton has led activists to call for the repeal of regulation 84-20 of the New Brunswick Medical Services Payment Act. It stipulates that abortions are paid for only if they are performed in one of two approved hospitals after being deemed medically necessary by two physicians.
"It's the same as any other health issue,” said Dr. Camille Haddad, the society’s president-elect.
Haddad says any procedure requires a referral from a family doctor and a consultation with a specialist.
"It's a decision between those two people, a family doctor and the woman, and the specialist and that's it,” he said. (all emphasis mine)I currently have a pre-cancerous skin problem on my face. I've seen my GP multiple times about it. She has now referred me to see a dermatologist and I have to wait five weeks for an appointment. Do you think I can just waltz into the dermatologist's office without a referral? Of course not. Do you think I can just waltz into his office without waiting those five weeks that I have to wait? Of course not. What about my access to a dermatologist?
Why do women expect to have access to an abortion--a completely discretionary procedure--without having to see any doctors at all? Why do they expect (I should say demand) this and I have to follow the defined process just like everyone else?
There are access problems and wait times for all medical procedures in Canada. Our health care system is sick. I just can't figure out why the abortion procedure always gets such special treatment over every other health issue.